Did you know that approximately 75% of Americans live in a state of dehydration? The fact is many people do not drink a sufficient amount of water. We feel the need to fancy it up with bubbles and artificial flavors and sweeteners, or just avoid it. Or we drink high calorie liquids such as juice or sodas, or alcoholic beverages which add to dehydration.
Why should I hydrate? Your body needs water to function properly. Your urinary tract, as well as your GI tract, needs water to help flush out toxins. You lose hydration through your lungs and skin. Dehydration can lead to brain fog, and an imbalance in electrolytes.
How much water should you drink? You should consume ½ your body weight in ounces of water. A person who weighs 200 lbs. should drink 100 ounces of water per day. This may seem like a lot but if you space it out throughout the day, it’s very manageable. If you feel that this amount is overwhelming, start out by just adding one bottle of water to your routine. Any increase that helps you move towards your goal is beneficial.
As soon as you get up in the morning start your day with a large glass of water, before you drink your coffee. Remember that caffeinated and alcoholic beverages have a dehydrating effect on your body so you need to add a few extra ounces of water to your daily intake. Carry a water bottle with you to refill throughout the day.
How can I tell I am getting enough water? One of the best indicators is your urine color. It should be very light yellow in color. If your urine is dark, you’re not drinking enough H2O.
Putting some fruit into your water can add some flavor and help you meet your intake goal. Try different combinations for a variety; cucumber and mint, blueberry and lime, or strawberry and lemon are some of my favorites. Not only do they add flavor, but also a hint of sweetness. Plus you can eat the additions as a snack 🙂